The latest installment in the increasingly testy (and meaningful, standings-wise) Battle of Los Angeles will take place at Staples Center tonight, but the Clippers are doing their best to downplay the animosity between them and the Lakers. From the LA Times: “Honestly, I don’t think it is one,’ center DeAndre Jordan said. ‘But I’m not worried about any other team. I don’t care about them. I respect them as a team and as players. Once we step in between that line, I could care less about any accomplishments they have.’ […] Both teams are fighting for the top spot in the Pacific Division, and the winner of the final regular-season game between the them will hold the tiebreaker in the series because the teams have split the first two games. The outcome could help determine the division champion and playoff seeding in the West. The Clippers last won the season series against the Lakers in 1992-93. […] There were 11 technical fouls in the first two games, plus one ejection and plenty of trash talking. In the first game, the Lakers’ Metta World Peace, Matt Barnes, Coach Mike Brown and rookie Darius Morris got technicals, as did Clippers forward Blake Griffin. In the second game, technical fouls were issued to the Lakers’ Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol, and Josh McRoberts, who got two and was ejected. The Clippers’ Chauncey Billups and Reggie Evans also received technicals. ‘We don’t make too much of it,’ Chris Paul said. ‘First of all, it’s been so long ago that we played them. We’re two totally different teams. I don’t even remember that last game too much. But it’s obviously a big game’ […] ‘It’s not really a rivalry,’ Blake Griffin said. ‘It’s a game between two teams that play in the same city, play in the same building. It’s just another game.'”
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